I love this! It is from the book, Letters to My Son by Kent Nerburn.
This is the magic of travel. Any travel. You leave your home secure in your own knowledge and identity. But as you travel, the world in all its richness intervenes. You meet people you could not invent; you see scenes you could not imagine. Your own world, which was so large as to consume your whole life, becomes smaller and smaller until it is only one tiny dot in time and space.
Slowly the memories of the familiar recede from your mind and you find yourself adrift in the experience of the world around you. Your thoughts and concerns change. Your emotions focus on new people and events. The world makes its claim on your heart and mind, and you are free, at least momentarily, from the concerns of your everyday life.
When you move on, you will have grown. You will realize that the possibilities of life in this world are endless, and that beneath our differences of language and culture we all share the dream of love and being loved, of having a life with more joy than sorrow.
And when you have tragedies or great changes in your life, how else will you truly understand that there are a thousand, a million ways to live, and that your life will go on to something new and different and every bit as worth as the life you are leaving behind. These lessons and more will have etched a new element in your character. You will know the cutting moments of life, where fear meets exhilaration...
…because I have traveled, I can see other universes in the eyes of strangers. Because I have traveled, I know what parts of me I cannot deny and what parts of me are simply choices that I make. I know the blessings of my own table and the warmth of my own bed. I know how much of life is pure chance, and how great a gift I have been given simply to be who I am.
…..That is why we need to travel. If we don't offer ourselves to the unknown, our senses dull. Our world becomes small and we lose our sense of wonder. Our eyes don't lift to the horizon; our ears don't hear the sounds around us. The edge is off our experience, and we pass our days in a routine that is both comfortable and limiting. We wake up one day and find that we have lost our dreams to protect our days.
I think it is very well stated and I am grateful that I have been given this opportunity to travel around the United States. It does open your eyes to amazing things.